KUALA LUMPUR, A civilised nation is moulded by arts and culture that flourish, with vigorous and innovative contributions that extract the best qualities of man, said Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
The Prime Minister said along with these, political, economic and social progress emerge.
“Malaysia inherits an endless potpourri of cultures, customs and traditions as the people are multicultural, multiracial and multi religious.
“This unique mixture contributed much towards the progress and development of the nation,” he said in a special video footage which was aired during welcoming dinner of the 8th World Summit on Arts and Culture, here today.
Dr Mahathir said Malaysia had metamorphosed from an agricultural into an industrial country and the pace had quickened with materialism.
“But Malaysia does not want to lose its identity. And that identity is defined by its culture and the arts,” he said adding that Malaysia does not want to lose its cultural heritage and it intends to preserve it, albeit with some adjustments.
He said the world is experiencing yet another period of epochal transformation and truly change is the only thing that is constant.
Speaking personally, I have lived through many periods of profound historical changes � colonialism and nationhood, war and occupation, from telegram to Instagram. From old Malaysia to Malaysia Baharu, the New Malaysia.
Change in itself is not bad. Disruption can be productive, if we anticipate it, prepare for it, and be willing to adapt and adjust, he added.
The 8th World Summit on Arts and Culture Kuala Lumpur 2019 is held at the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre from March 11 to 14 with the theme Mobile Minds: Culture, Knowledge & Change, co-hosted by International Federation of Arts and Culture (IFACCA) and the National Department for Culture and Arts (JKKN).
With the participation of more than 60 countries, the summit will be an opportunity to strengthen the civil society, promote collaboration between non-profit organisations and government sectors as well as to allow arts organisations and institutions to interact.